Mississippi governor to host parties at governor's mansion despite orders against large gatherings

Tate Reeves
Posted at 2:47 PM, Dec 09, 2020

Despite instituting orders limiting large gatherings throughout the state, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves has invited local lawmakers and other officials to the state governor's mansion for Christmas parties in the coming days, according to Mississippi Today and the Washington Post.

According to Mississippi Today, Reeves, a Republican, has issued executive orders that limit indoor gatherings to no more than 10 people, limit outdoor gatherings to 50 people and require the use of masks or facial coverings indoors for 54 of the state's 82 counties. Those orders include Hinds County, home of the state capital of Jackson and the governor's mansion.

But despite those orders, Reeves has reportedly sent invitations to state and district elected officials throughout the state to attend three separate Christmas parties at the governor's mansion, including parties for both the state Senate and House of Representatives.

While it's not known how many people are invited to each party, it would appear that more than 10 people would be attending. The State House has 122 members, and the Senate has 52 members.

Mississippi Today also reports that Reeves attended a fundraiser hosted by a hospital executive last week that included more than 20 guests.

Bailey Martin, a spokesperson for the governor, told Mississippi Today that the events will follow Reeves' orders.

"The Governor and first lady have canceled or delayed many mansion events this year including the 1st Friday Christmas Candlelighters event and their daughter's 16th birthday party, and have only continued with those events that can be conducted safely," Martin said.

Reeves' wife, Elee, said on Monday that she would not be opening the governor's mansion for public tours of the Christmas decorations, as she had in years past.

Reeves isn't the only politician to flout his own COVID-19 orders and pleads.

Last month, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock traveled to Mississippi to celebrate Thanksgiving with his daughter despite urging people not to travel.

Also last month, Austin Mayor Steve Adler urged his constituents not to travel in a video that was shot while he was vacationing in Mexico.